Ok, I'll make a bit of a start now and add pics some time in the future.
This whole Woodland Bard jaunt really started during a massive stroke I had at 2:13 am during the wee hours of 6th May during the lord's year of 2010.
I went into a timeless, spaceless, out of body experience with a 'spirit guide', I think they call it.
Actually this is a tough thing to explain, so I'll continue to head off into storyteller yarn style to attempt to explain something that is hard to grasp and use language for.
For about 53 years and 8 months I had carried a fascination and wonder for ancient megalithic sites and their possible metaphysical connections and manifestations. Yes, places like Stonehenge, Avebury, Newgrange, Callanish and all those millions of stone ordered places described as 'older than the pyramids'.
My wonder was not for the archaeology or any 'down to earth' well researched, well documented, jargon academy science ... but simply carry the question "what on earth happened here!"
That 'question' was expressed through those years through folk drama and theatrics with friends, while they lasted, along with a compulsive composing and cacophonous performance of songs, poetry, stories and musicky compositions.
And what about the Lay Lines?
Oh yes, what a journey their wonder can lead us into. The human dream of feng shui of the landscape we should honour, support and enhance. So there was I for several years with my Jack The Lad Old Straight Track LP under one arm, while reciting from my John Michell book held by the other, while also trying to dangle a gold ring, tied to one of my long hairs, over an Ordnance Survey map to achieve some magical dowsing revelation.
And then through the curse of the paralytic stroke, the angel of "I told you so, but you would never listen" wrenched my 'spirit' from body for a timeless, spaceless walk-about that seem to last for months .. but was probably no more than two minutes in human time, and here is what I was shown.
Stone circles, stone cairns, stone courts, stone dolmens, stones standing, and stone crosses are all human creations from stones ripped from the planet that can never return to it in the same way again.
Each of these constructions were and are of human design and human command by one or few people, the 1%, who ordered the other 99% to build them for their purpose. Yes, there are theories of these places also being built by seemingly leaderless communities who lived a bit like organised ants or murmuring starlings. This 'spiritual' guided tour did not reveal that.
The 99% became enslaved to the commands of 1% humans who called to be recognized as heroes, chosen teachers, priests, kings, queens and even gods and goddesses ... to replace and absorb the 'Presence Of Love' within the 99%.
I was shown that 'slavery is when we give away our Presence Of Love' and add it to the 'Power inventory' of another.
Lay Lines? Yes, I was shown these as being a 'human dream' for order, a way to control and order the flow and creations of nature, to enslave all life, not just humans, to form conduits of all life that connect at 'Power Points' - rather than let nature, the Presence Of Love, flow freely through its own organic ebbs and flows between light and dark.
I was shown how each human construction, even each field walled or fenced, is an attempted genocide of all other life present that is cleared away to make the construction possible.
Being part of earthly biodiversity is rarely their intent, especially with points and spires pointing towards an unknown in the sky or universe. Our failing believe that there is always somewhere much better than where we ever are.
Yes, as humans we have our houses, cottages, mansions and apartment, all built through a process of clearing away all other life once in those spaces. We arrange our gardens to control what's present, such as weeding, clipping and deciding what should be planted where.
I was shown the stress maintaining these things can give us.
I still live in a cottage, and still 'organize' a Tree Labyrinth garden, that has actually become quite a permaculture biodiversity paradise without me trying.
We can slowly adjust to accept the ebbs and flows that nature, that life, invites us to join and dance with.
I was shown love of the trees, not those planted by humans which are truly lovely too, but those gifted trees seeded and finding their place through the excreted droppings of animals and birds, or rested from the movement of winds, breezes and even water.
I was shown the water that rose from deep within the earth to surface, fresh, nourishing and gasping for new oxygen.
I was shown that all this IS the Fae, that is the regeneration and distribution of life, that is the Presence Of Love, and that we can all Bathe In The Fae's Breath to resolve and dissolve our concerns, guild, anxieties and fears - that enslavement can bring us.
So now I express all of this through stories, poetry, songs, music, drama, and sometimes a wee dance.
I express through sorrow, joy (I love a joke or two), and dreaming as there is always dark, light and that vortex place and space between.
Yes, I do still visit those ancient stone circles, cairns, dolmens and 'monuments' because people do come to Ireland for these much more than for the living and so I share these places with them.
But I find I do not really share the stones and praise of the 'gods and goddesses' that ordered their construction .
I now visit to celebrate the algae, mosses, fungi, grasses, flowers, shrubs and trees that have found their way to these places and are now free again to spread and share their dance of biodiversity.
I visit places to celebrate the return of the Fae again though all living things present, especially the trees and water gifts from the earth.
This is what I do as John Willmott, aka The Woodland Bard.
Oh, as for the Stroke experience?
Well complete paralysis reduced to left side paralysis, and then I was walking again, guiding people through forests and over hills within a three months.
Now, I dedicate my life to the timeless spaceless guided experience of those very still moments in May 2010.
I look forward to you sharing with you and being present to your interpretations at 'Happenings' and maybe here on 'Retreats'